Nature Friday ~ November 11, 2022

Norman & ElsaWelcome to this week’s edition of Nature Friday which just happens to fall on Veterans Day in the US. An official public holiday celebrated in the US annually on November 11, we  honor military veterans, that is, anyone who served in the United States Armed Forces. Also known as Armistice Day and Remembrance Day in other countries, it marks the anniversary of the end of World War I when the major hostilities formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 when the Armistice with Germany went into effect. Prior to 1954, it was known as Armistice Day in the US and still is known by that name elsewhere. The Ranch Hands and I tip our hats to all veterans today so that we may be free. Red poppies are frequently worn to commemorate today but without any blooming poppies, we’ll serve up as different kind of flora and hope you don’t mind.

As always, we’re joining those fur-kids from Adventures of the LLB Gang for this weekly blog hop where people from around Blogville share slices of Nature.

This nimble little dude pretty much describes how the weather has been again this week. Up, down and all around throughout this week. It’s enough to make you dizzy.Yo-yo
We’re now well into the season of brown with countless leaves raining down on the landscape pretty much nonstop. Bags and bags full of leaves are primed to be recycled into luscious compost at the city leaf drop. But first, my back needs to chill after all that raking, which still isn’t complete but at least people can see the sidewalk once again.

With the up and down temps, imagine my surprise at seeing some colorful roses when visiting a friend yesterday. I can’t help but wonder how they fared overnight. When we woke up this morning it was a brisk 18ºF degrees. Brrrrrrr. Norman looked at me with an expression that suggested I was out of my mind. That may well be ole chap, but the truth remains, you need to make a pit stop. An audible harrumph may have been heard as he slowly meandered out to the dog run.

I’m always drawn to vibrant hues of pink in roses and this one punched my dance card nicely.

Flowers

Coming in on the beauty pagent of beautiful roses comes this peachy orange colored one. The fact that it was nicely highlighted in the autumn sunlight also made it worthy to share.

Flowers

But of the three, I think this one is my absolute favorite. Those beautiful shades of peach, pink and yellow spoke to me, saying it was the belle of the ball. And I had to concede that fact.

Flowers

Well that’s it from us. Do you still have roses blooming in your garden? What’s your favorite color of rose?

We hope you have a wonderful weekend but ask that you stop for a few moments and think about honoring veterans in some special way. After all, they are what makes our freedom possible. Whatever name you call it, we hope you have a safe and reflective Veteran/Armistice Day.

Nature Friday

Live, love, bark! 🐾

 

 

 

 

 

Therapy Monday ~ October 24, 2022

Monday

While it may be Monday, chasing a ball as a form of therapy won’t be necessary since Norman will be visiting the hospital this week. Assuming I can get him out of bed this morning, that is. We had the teensiest speck of snow last night and the big guy is taking his sweet time getting up from the smallest bed in the house. Let’s just say Elsa wasn’t amused he bogarted her bed. Luckily everyone just snuggled in their respective spots staying cozy and allowing the storm pass. Today will be crisp but sunny. Typical weather for Halloween week. Sorry kids.

Norman

Here’s hoping your Monday is full of joy and sunshine.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Monday Musings ~ August 22, 2022

Good Monday morning. As you might deduce, we’re off to bring some smiles to folks at Lutheran this week. Norman thinks this cartoon pretty much explains what his job is all about (sans the face licking part which is unacceptable behavior). Here’s hoping all your encounters this week bring lots of smiles.

Smiles
A pet therapist’s job description

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Wordless Wednesday ~ August 3, 2022

Signs

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Monday Musings ~ July 18, 2022

Elsa encountered some stomach upset yesterday in the living room (I know…hard to believe given all the things she’s eaten over the years). Apparently (1) she does NOT have a cast iron stomach as once thought and (2) napkins don’t digest very well. My question is why do dogs intuitively race over to the carpet to up-chuck? Especially when they’re sitting on hardwood floors several feet away. Oye.

Monday Musings

For the record, she’s fine, just a ‘tiny’ bit obsessed with eating grass. Who knew grass acts like ginger ale for canine tummies?

Here’s hoping any accidents you encounter this week are minor. Try to stay cool.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Monday Musings ~ June 13, 2022

Smile

Not sure about you, but that’s not a problem for me. Happy Monday. May you and your ‘popular guest’ have a fabulous week. Try to stay cool this week.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

Memorial Day Monday ~ 2022

Holidays

While today is the ‘unofficial’ beginning of summer, we think of it as a day of reflection around the Ranch and plan to honor all service members, particularly those in our family who have served their country, with a special shout out to a niece’s son who graduated from high school this past week and enlisted in the Air Force just like both of his parents did. Way to go, Levi.

Memorial Day, a national holiday in the U.S., is where we officially remember and mourn all who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. Originally known as “Decoration Day” following the Civil War when both Union and Confederate soldiers honored their dead by decorating their graves with flowers, it has morphed into its current form honoring all Americans who served and paid the ultimate price of freedom.

Have a safe and reflective day.

Holidays

Live, love, bark!  🐾

Nature Friday ~ May 6, 2022

If yesterday’s stock market dive has left you feeling a bit stressed, then hopefully this week’s Nature Friday edition will provide some comfort. As usual we’re joining our fur-pals, Rosy, Sunny and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard. Hopefully these new pics from the Denver Botanical Gardens will be the antidote that can help restore your zen.

Norman & Elsa curated these images from my favorite area within Denver Botanical Garden’s grounds. Despite the fact the Ranch Hands are not being able to enjoy the beauty first hand (dogs are not permitted unless they are bona fide service dogs), it’s a place full of peaceful calm and serenity. Let’s go straight to the zen, shall we?

First, a little bit of historical info about the garden called Shofu-En, or “Garden of the Pine Winds.” Located in the northwestern corner of DBG, the Japanese Garden was designed by Koichi Kawana over 40 years ago (he also designed Japanese gardens in San Diego, Chicago, and St. Louis). Kawana transplanted over 100 locally sourced ponderosa pines that had been stunted by harsh, windy conditions in the Roosevelt National Forest near Boulder, Colorado. Some of the smaller trees are more than 200 years old and are meticulously maintained to preserve their size and shape through trimming and tying of their branches.

Kawana also designed the teahouse, that was originally built in Japan, disassembled and rebuilt on the site. In the 40 years I’ve lived in the metro area, I’ve only seen the tea house in use between the fence slats just once for a private group. Without sufficient access to the fenced area, I’ve never really been able to get a decent picture but learned tea ceremonies are held during summer months, pre-registration is required and it’s already sold out for the 2022 season.

There are several features that distinguish a Japanese garden. This little fella, camped out near the “Bee Hotel” featured in last week’s post, sweetly shouted them out as I moved toward the garden. Overall, the keys are: keep it natural, simple and uncluttered.

Critters
Welcome visitors..

Japanese gardening offer simple, peaceful spaces that promote contemplation and serenity. The space can be small or large but always focuses on natural elements to provide a relaxing retreat, underscoring nature’s impact on the space.

Japanese garden
Order and serenity are a hallmark of Japanese garden design.
Flowers
Welcome to the Japanese Garden

Beautifully raked areas are often a prominent feature in a Japanese garden. No wonder dogs cannot accompany their owners. With Norman’s big paws, this area’s serenity and order would be undone in no time.

With Denver’s climate of being considered a mountain desert, a dry garden is in perfect harmony with Japanese garden design. It’s easy to slowly meander across the bridge while walking around a small water feature that feeds into the lake. Spaces are meant for viewing nature, provide balance and inspiring peaceful meditation.

Japanese garden
Boulders and a small  bridge adds to the zen feeling.

The pièce de résistance centerpiece of the garden is the pond and this redbud tree highlights it beautifully with spring color.

Japanese Garden
Calm at the pond area.
Pond
Evergreen trees surround the pond.
Bells
Japanese bells.
Bells
Temple Bells.

These temple bells were provided by a generous DBG patron. They are exquisite and one can only imagine the sound they could make when struck.

Koi pond
Koi enjoying a spot of sun.

No Japanese garden is complete without a Koi pond. These guys slowly meander about adding to the whole peacefulness of the space.

I hope this short tour lowered your blood pressure and just in time for a Mother’s Day celebration this weekend. Everyone at the Ranch wish mum’s everywhere, a lovely day with meaningful time with their children, whether they have two or four feet.

Nature Friday

Live, love, bark!  🐾

Monday Musings ~ April 25, 2022

Smiles

Just a heads up…we will be visiting with patients and nurses for the next couple of days so our responses may be somewhat delayed but we’ll do our very best. We hope you have a happy Monday and ‘pawsome’ week.

Live, love, bark!  🐾

Nature Friday ~ April 15, 2022

Welcome to the Good Friday edition of Nature Friday. As always, we’re joining our hosts, Rosy, Sunny and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard.

Nature has been conspiring against us most of this week with ongoing high winds every day, making Wi-Fi sporadic at best. The laptop did a death gasp and am now trying to post something from my phone. People who are able to function that way have my greatest admiration.

As I’m clearly inept in my feeble attempts of trying to post from a phone (trying to insert images is beyond challenging), I’ll just end this painful exercise by hoping everyone has a Happy Easter, Passover or Ramadanwhichever holiday you celebrate.

Hopefully we’ll be back and fully functioning online next week. Till then, do good things, smile and be kind. But for heavens sake, make sure to get outside and enjoy some of the Nature shares. Had I been able to figure out how to add additional photos, you no doubt would have agreed with me. ☮️

Live, love, bark🐾